Fast Facts About Abortion

Blog Articles · Mar 24, 2023 · Life

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Babies Are Human

Science has changed dramatically since Roe v. Wade in 1973. We now know more about the development of each human being from fertilization to birth than ever before.

  • A preborn baby starts moving, and develops their first sense: touch – by six weeks after conception. A baby will respond to a light touch on her lips or cheeks by reflexively moving away, or he will move away when his umbilical cord or the wall of the uterus touches him in the womb.

  • During the first eight weeks of development, more than 90% of a baby’s body parts have formed. A baby can bend her elbows and bring her hands together.

  • At 13 weeks after conception, the evidence points to a preborn baby being able to experience pain.

  • The youngest premature babies to survive have been born in the 19th week after conception (21 weeks gestation). As hospitals invest in life-saving technologies to save their smallest, most miraculous patients, the age of viability gets younger and younger, bringing joy and hope to many families.

Find more facts on the Voyage of Life from the Charlotte Lozier Institute.

Abortion Hurts Women

The real hypocrisy comes from an abortion industry masquerading as women’s health care.

  • Many women are pressured into unwanted abortions. According to a Lozier Institute peer-reviewed study published in the Cureus medical journal, over 60 percent of women who had abortions report high levels of pressure to abort from one or more sources, and those same women report higher levels of subsequent mental health and quality of life issues.

  • Abortion carries undisputed risks of immediate medical complications. They include blood clots, hemorrhage, incomplete abortions, infection, and injury to the cervix and other organs. Abortion can also cause cardiac arrest, respiratory arrest, renal failure, metabolic disorder, shock, and missed ectopic pregnancy. One study by the South Dakota Task Force to Study Abortion concluded that immediate medical complications affect approximately 10 percent of women undergoing abortions, and approximately one-fifth of these complications are life threatening.

  • Abortion puts women at greater risk of long-term and future pregnancy complications. Congressman Donald Norcross (D-NJ) wrote in February 2023 that women who had abortions “often went on to have a child by choice when they were more financially secure, therefore improving outcomes for the mother and the child.” Yet according to research from Charlotte Lozier Institute (CLI), analyzing 17 years of comprehensive Medicaid claims data, women whose first pregnancy ends in abortion had on average 53% more miscarriages than women whose first pregnancy resulted in a live birth.

  • Abortion significantly increases risk of mental health problems. Peer reviewed research has found increased risk of poor mental health, based on an analysis of data from the “National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent to Adult Health” finding that each abortion increased the risk of mental health problems by 23%.

  • International evidence suggests abortion worsens maternal mortality rates. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) maternal and abortion-related mortality data is notoriously incomplete. One study found in Mexico that states with more restrictive abortion laws exhibited lower maternal mortality rates related to abortion and overall. Another study found countries like El Salvador, Chile, Poland and Nicaragua have subsequently seen improvements in maternal mortality rates after prohibiting abortion, whereas South Africa worsened after legalizing abortion.

  • Chemical abortions are not safer than surgical abortions. Chemical abortion has a complication rate four times that of surgical abortion, and is over 50% more likely than surgical abortions to result in an ER visit within 30 days. Mifepristone also cannot treat an ectopic pregnancy and can mask the symptoms of tubal rupture, putting women at risk of severe bleeding and death. Additionally, they create increased risk of forced abortions.

Abortion Hurts Our Communities

Abortion doesn’t just harm mothers and children – it hurts our communities and society.

  • Abortion harms medicine. Abortion creates cognitive dissonance for medical professionals – providing care based on whether a child is wanted – and perverts good medicine. As Ryan Anderson and Alexandra DeSanctis write, “it’s telling that most modern versions of the Hippocratic Oath, which some students take upon entering medical school, have been revised to omit the line about abortion. There is perhaps no more fitting example of the way in which abortion has corrupted the medical profession” (page 123).

  • Abortion undermines the fabric of society. Abortion demands denying the personhood of the preborn child. As Ryan Anderson and Alexandra DeSanctis write, “Denials of personhood to categories of human beings have been used throughout history to subjugate, oppress, and extinguish groups of people that those in power wanted to eliminate. History gives us little reason to believe denying personhood to some human beings has even been used to further justice or equality–instead, in every such instance, it has been used in precisely the opposite way” (page 33).

  • The loss of unborn lives from abortion has an economic toll, in addition to a moral one. One analysis found that in 2019, with the loss of nearly 630,000 unborn lives, abortion cost the U.S. roughly $6.9 trillion, or 32 percent of GDP.

There Is Help For Women

Now, more than ever, there is growing support for women facing unplanned and difficult pregnancies.

  • There is real help for women. There are more than 2,700 pro-life pregnancy centers in all 50 states. Planned Parenthood has approximately 585 facilities in only 48 states. In 2019, pro-life pregnancy centers served roughly two million women, men, and youth, and provided services and support valued at nearly $270 million at little to no cost to clients. Tangible support included medical care and referrals, education, mentoring, and material support including diapers, car seats, and clothing.

  • Pro-life laws ensure care for life-threatening conditions. Every pro-life law allows for care for women suffering miscarriage, ectopic pregnancies or a septic uterus. To claim that pro-life laws prohibit providing care for these life-threatening conditions risks dangerous confusion and is grossly irresponsible. If a woman’s life is in immediate danger, doctors can also administer a preterm delivery instead of terminating the life of her child.

Americans Agree: Protect Life

Most Americans want to protect unborn babies from abortion. The Left claims Americans support Roe v. Wade, but the legal framework for the case is widely misunderstood. In fact, public sentiment changes dramatically once the facts of the case are broken down.

  • 71 percent of Americans support protections for life after 15 weeks of gestation, protections that Roe prevented states from passing.

  • A Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll found that a majority of Americans said they either wanted the decision overturned or protections for life to start earlier, at 15 weeks.

  • 61 percent of Americans believe that abortion should either be illegal or left to the states to decide.

  • A plurality of Americans support protections for unborn lives after 6 weeks of life in the womb, when a heartbeat can be detected, according to Heritage Action polling.

Every Life Is Precious

We should recognize the dignity of every life.

  • Oprah Winfrey’s mother became pregnant at seventeen. Despite a lack of education and skills, she chose to keep her baby. Oprah has more accomplishments than one could list that include American talk show host, television producer, actress, author, and philanthropist.

  • Céline Dion’s mother was overwhelmed to find out she was pregnant with her 14th child. While she did consider abortion, with support from her priest, she was able to choose life. Céline Dion is known as one of the greatest singers and best-selling artists living today.

  • Stephen Curry’s mother struggled with whether to have a second abortion, and ultimately choose life. Steph Curry is considered the greatest shooter of all-time in the NBA.

  • Steve Jobs was born to an unwed graduate student who chose to place him with a family for adoption. He once shared about his birth mother: “I wanted to meet [her] mostly to see if she was OK and to thank her, because I’m glad I didn’t end up as an abortion. She was 23 and she went through a lot to have me.” Steve Jobs was the co-founder and CEO of Apple.